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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71042
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I am an electrical subcontractor working on a fixed price to

Customer Question

I am an electrical subcontractor working on a fixed price to the main M&E contractor. The contract was originally for 34 weeks and I allowed within my quote supervision time (by me) for my guys for this period of time. I also supply site boxes , access equipment , drills and leads etc for this contract. The contract end date is here abut the project is going to over run by approx 12 weeks. I submit a monthly application (once agreed paid on a 45 day payment agreement) which shows percentages of works carried out , supervisor time and access equipment costs etc. With the contract due to over run significantly the company that I am sub contracted to do not want to cover the extra costs that I will incur for Supervision , access equipment hire , drill leads site boxes etc. What legal leverage am I able to use to ensure that they agree to cover these costs, where do I stand legally with regard to finishing the project as it is significantly over running. If I were to walk away what would happen with regard to payments on applications agreed, could they refuse payment of these even though they have been signed off by the QS for payment? I am not overly concerned about working with them again but I am concerned about getting what monies I am due.


Michael Bush
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Jo C. :

Hi. Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this. Did the contract allow for potential overruns?

Jo C. :

I am just in court so may not be able to repsond immediately but will get back to you as soon as I can

JACUSTOMER-q7op4guo- :

No the contract was for 34 weeks. There was no allowance for over running of time in fact it was expressed that the end date could not be moved. I am going into a meeting myself shortly so may not get back to you until later.

JACUSTOMER-q7op4guo- :

Some additional info , I never had to provide a breakdown of costs against supervision duties or access equipment to the main contractor. The costs were calculated by me for the duration of the project. I can forward you any documentation you want if that makes answering this question easier.

JACUSTOMER-q7op4guo- :

Be back online at 4pm

Jo C. :

I'm just going to convert this to Q and A because I cannot see your responses.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

That is much better!

Did the contract say time is of the essence?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No it did not say time is of the essence. Basically a program of works was issued with a completion date.The builder failed to comply with the program therefore falling behind.My works are totally dependent on the building works being carried out so that I can fit lights etc. I issued a weekly report to the company I am sub contracted to outlining where the project was falling behind etc.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Have you sent your answer yet?



Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Thank you.

Whether you are entitled to walk away from this or not, would depend on the terms of the original contract.

If you quoted a fixed price for a fixed number of weeks work, then you are bound to that and so they.

If you quoted a fixed price for doing the whole job then you are bound to that fixed price for the whole job.

If you quoted a fixed price for the whole job and they want you to stay longer, you would have to prove that it was a term of the contract between you that the rest of the job was ready for you to do your job within the timescale.

However it would depend on exactly what paperwork, there is supporting the fixed price for the fixed term.

In fairness, they will struggle to make you work the remaining hours.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.